Table Tennis Coach selected for GB Olympics training role

College coach will coach the GB Team

Head Table Tennis Coach, Gavin Evans has been at the college for over 3 years and has now secured a coaching role as GB men’s captain for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Gavin has been drafted in on secondment from the college and will take on the role of British coach for the Olympic qualifying process and the Games themselves, should GB team qualify. The secondment will be at least until the end of January 2020 but could last until August 10th – the end of the Olympics.

Vice Principal, Steven Peacock welcomes Gavin’s new appointment: “We wish Gavin and the team every success with this endeavour, and are delighted to have a Grantham College colleague at the heart of Team GB’s Olympic plans.”

Gavin is well known to the current squad and is sure to have their respect, given a playing record which saw him become European youth champion (in the Cadet Boys’ Singles) in 2008.

Later the same year, he won team bronze alongside Paul Drinkhall and Liam Pitchford, as well as Darius Knight, at the World Junior Championships. He previously joined Drinkhall and Knight in the squad which won Cadet Boys’ Team gold in the 2005 European Youth Championships.

A serious hip injury ended his playing career before he could really transition into the senior ranks, so he followed a new career path as a coach.

As well as being a former team-mate of Pitchford and Drinkhall, he has been a key influence on the career of Tom Jarvis, who trained with him at Grantham College prior to moving to Sweden.

Gavin, 26, is keen to get started in his new role commenting: “It’s an amazing opportunity. I’m happy to be asked to do the role and excited to go out into the world and see what we can do.

“I’ll be able to visit the players on an individual basis, to work on little things that can make a big difference in matches, but also to be able to bring them all together when we can for training together and building team spirit.

“The key priorities are first to perform at the Team World Cup and then to qualify for the 2020 Olympics and then hopefully when we qualify it will be a matter of doing some really good training and, as the boys have proved, when they come together and perform then on the day they can beat anyone in the world.”

Gavin is has just returned from Berlin and will be visiting Tokyo next week for the first ‘practise run.’ 

Staff and students at Grantham College & University Centre would like to wish Gavin every success on his new journey and we can’t wait to see the progress the team make with Gavin by their side. 

If you’d like to train at the college’s world class facilities, take a look at our website or visit us at our next open evening on Tuesday 19 November at 5-8pm.